inherent risks associated with increased building exhaust The inherent risks associated with increased building exhaust as recommended in this LEED credit are numerous:

  • It increases the importance of a very accurate test and balance process to insure that adjacent building areas are not accidentally depressurized (including wall and ceiling cavities).
  • The suggested pressure differentials (5 Pa) are significantly more precise than the average test and balance firm can measure, likely leading to errors.
  • Since the suggested exhaust rates and pressure differentials are minimum figures, there might be a tendency for some practitioners to vastly exceed these amounts (under the concept that “more is better”), which could result in an even increased potential for uncontrolled air flows and moisture problems.
  • It has been the experience of many practitioners in the field of forensic building science that achieving negative pressure conditions in parts of a building, while maintaining overall positive building pressures elsewhere, is an extremely delicate balance to achieve.

 

J. David Odom is a Vice President and Senior Building Forensics Consultant with Liberty Building Forensics Group. He has managed some of the largest and most complex mold and moisture problems in the country, including the $60M construction defect claim at the Hilton Hawaiian Village in Honolulu and the $20M claim at the Martin County courthouse. He has also managed over 500 projects for the Walt Disney Corporation dating back to 1982 that have included technical issues related to corrosion, moisture, and design & construction defect-related problems. He has published numerous manuals and technical articles, including a monograph on moisture and mold for the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB). For more information, contact J. David Odom at d.odom@libertybuilding.com.

With over 35 years of experience, Richard S. Scott is an expert in the areas of architecture, interior design, and building forensics, with a focus on moisture-related building problems. He is certified by both the American Institute of Architects/AIA Florida and the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB). He has published over 30 articles, and has lectured or presented at nearly 40 seminars or events. Mr. Scott has developed various training courses, including a 16-hour IAQ training course for NASA and an 8-hour water intrusion prevention training course for the Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC). He can be reached at r.scott@libertybuilding.com.

George H. DuBose, CGC is a certified Florida General Contractor and Vice President with Liberty Building Forensics Group, a firm specializing in moisture intrusion, mold problems, litigation support/buildings forensics, problem-avoidance peer reviews, commissioning, and implementation of green buildings. He has authored numerous articles and co-authored three manuals on moisture-related indoor air quality (IAQ) problems and building commissioning. He has diagnosed and solved hundreds of moisture and mold related building problems worldwide. DuBose can be contacted at g.dubose@libertybuilding.com.